|Midnite Mixtape Massacre - Mick Priestley - The Green River Project|
|Written by Mick Priestley|
|Sunday, 06 May 2012 05:00|
"Mick Priestley is easily one of the most exciting guitarists in the UK at the moment." - Sam Totman, Dragonforce; do guitarist endorsements come much higher than that?
Mick Priestley is the guitarist with The Green River Project, a true crime-fuelled mob whose latest EP is a must-listen-to piece of dark, riotous metal. Get the EP - with contributions from Andy Law, Alex Martin, Adrian Erlandsson (Cradle Of Filth/At The Gates/Nemhain/Paradise Lost) and ZP Theart (Dragonforce) - at www.mickpriestley.net
1.) 'Revelation Mother Earth' - Ozzy Osbourne (from the album 'Blizzard Of Ozz')
If I'd never heard the 'Blizzard Of Ozz' album, I wouldn't be talking to you now. Randy Rhoads' guitar playing still blows me away and this entire record is fantastic. A few of the songs on here are somewhat underrated, but 'Revelation Mother Earth' is a masterpiece. Especially on the 'Tribute' album. It's a shame more people aren't aware of this track.
2.) 'No Remorse' - Cannibal Corpse (from the 'Worm Infested' EP)
Cannibal Corpse's music, to be fair, is ghastly. Album after album of hideous noise, dreadful recording quality, blastbeats and death growls aren't my cup of tea ... but they almost redeem themselves to a certain degree via a handful of covers! This one (of the classic Metallica tune) is, quite simply, epic. And better than the original, even if the vocals are somewhat hilarious. The original Metallica riff is re-invented as skull-crushingly brutal and drop-tuned, and the recording quality is infinitely better than on anything like 'Tomb Of The Mutilated'.
3.) 'Look At Your Game, Girl' - Charles Manson (from the album 'Lie: The Love And Terror Cult')
Charles Manson's music is massively overrated too. He's cited as an 'influence' mainly by bands lacking quality music and seeking attention instead through appearing 'controversial'...but this is about as close as he gets to a good song. The rest are abysmal. His singing voice is actually quite decent on this, and I always figured that if it was re-arranged it has the potential to be quite a decent song. He almost gets there...but it needs a bit of work. Sadly he's too preoccupied with claiming space aliens are stealing his brain or whatever he's raging on about now.
4.) 'Concerto' - Cacophony (from the album 'Speed Metal Symphony')
A woefully under-appreciated track from a woefully under-recognised band. The guitar work on this track is simply magical, with Jason Becker and Marty Friedman taking up dual-shredding duties...but it's not just a shred-o-rama, it's a beautifully constructed piece of neoclassical mayhem. What ended up happening to Jason Becker was nothing short of heartbreaking.
5.) 'Good Time' - Alan Jackson (from the album of the same name)
I'm definitely mixing it up a bit here... I went with a couple of guys to Vegas to see Alan Jackson play a few years ago...and it whipped ass! Lots of people kinda sneer at country music a bit but it's definitely something you get into. And Alan has to be the king of cheese-country! Saw a behind-the-scenes thing with him where he was showing you his garage ... and the 18-wheelers, biplanes and musclecars he collects. He's sold about a gazillion records and is seen like a god in the deep south, but nobody here has a clue who he is!
6.) 'Caprici Di Diablo' - Yngwie Malmsteen (from the album 'Perpetual Flame')
I'm a major Malmsteen fan anyway, and people seem to either love or hate him, but I think he's fantastic. Even his dreadful songs have a special place in my heart! I was trying to decide between this and 'Asylum' from the 'Alchemy' album, which is probably his most insane album, for which is the coolest, most outrageous track I could think of. This one definitely wins it. The six-string-fretboard-warping arpeggiofest in this track just goes to show that he really does up the game guitar-wise with every album. Lots of guys end up taking their foot off the pedal, but this guy never seems to have done that.
7.) 'The Nobodies' - Marilyn Manson (from the album 'Holy Wood')
Marilyn Manson kinda did that thing that too many massive acts seem to do - start off with a few dodgy albums, put out a couple of better ones, hit the pinnacle of their career with an absolute work of art, then dive off the deep end and disappear, seemingly swapping time in the studio for time rolling around in giant piles of cash, giving up in the knowledge that he'll never get any bigger than he already has been and merely putting albums out to keep his name there and fulfil records contracts. The 'Holy Wood' album, by a mile, is the greatest goth rock album I've ever heard though, and this could be, in my opinion, the track of his career.
8.) 'Recuerdos de la Alhambra' - Francisco Tarrega
An absolutely awesome piece of music, while simultaneously taking the title as the most outrageous piece of classical guitar playing you'll hear ever hear. I've got a recording of Simon Dinnigan doing it and it's immense, though there are a bunch of random dudes on youtube nailing it as well. I was particularly fond of the guy playing it in the snow...for some reason! People who turn their noses up at classical music because "they're so metal" need to realise that the music of their favourite band will NOT be still selling out arenas in 400 years' time.
9.) 'Dig Your Grave' - The Green River Project (from the self-titled EP)
Well, it would just seem like a missed opportunity if I didn't plug one of our tunes on here! This was the first song I wrote for The Green River Project, and it's got Adrian from Cradle Of Filth on drums. We've actually shifted tens of thousands of copies of it through cover mounts/ free downloads and whatnot, and I'm very proud of it. If you go to www.mickpriestley.net you can download it for free!
10.) 'Behind The Wall Of Sleep' - Black Sabbath (from the self-titled album)
I don't think I need to tell you how big a deal Black Sabbath are. As far as I'm concerned, heavy metal in the 1970s consisted of three bands - Sabbath, Deep Purple and Led Zeppelin. In that order. To be honest, I never really liked Led Zeppelin, and Deep Purple were kinda cool, but nowhere near on the level that Sabbath were. This track is one of my favourite tracks of all time. I'm looking forward to seeing them live this summer, but it's gonna blow if Bill Ward isn't on drums.
11.) 'You Know I'm No Good' - Amy Winehouse (from the album 'Back To Black')
Can't say I give a shit if people roll their eyes at this. When I first moved to London, I moved to Camden Town and have been there ever since. I was nothing short of aghast when she died. You used to see her about quite regularly - I remember randomly buying Skittles with her in the 24-hour shop beneath my house at 4 in the morning...and hearing suddenly that she'd died on the news was horrifying, as were the disgusting rants of the self-righteous and entirely ignorant regarding anybody with a substance problem. This is my favourite track of hers.
12.) 'Unholy' - KISS (from the album 'Revenge')
Oh yes. Oh yes. This track, quite simply, kicks it. I love the live version floating around on the internet from the nineties ... it's somewhere in America ... I can't remember. But they have the makeup off, and it's Bruce Kulick on guitar and Eric Singer (I think) on drums, so some people'll say it's not 'real' KISS. I disagree. Kulick was a LOT cooler than Tommy Thayer (the current guy) and Ace Frehley never did it for me to be honest. Gene and Paul , in that order, are KISS - they can have whoever the hell they want filling in.
13.) 'Tender Surrender' - Steve Vai (from the 'Alien Love Secrets' EP)
On one hand, I'm a Steve Vai fan. On the other hand, I'm not. Even I can't listen to an entire album all the way through and he's one of the few guitarists that I'd admit I'll listen to, almost without exception, simply to hear some outrageous licks. This track, however, is different. Easily, by a mile, the best track of his entire career...absolutely beautiful, and with simply one of the most killer guitar tones you'll ever hear.